Yvonne Koolmatrie

Yvonne Koolmatrie is a Ngarrindjeri woman who is also inspired by the traditions of her culture. As an adult Koolmatrie attended a workshop on traditional methods of harvesting, preparing and weaving Murray River sedge grass.

Koolmatrie found that weaving helped her to overcome personal grief and gave her a portal to tell her story. Koolmatrie is probably best known for her eel trap weavings. These have aspects
of traditional weaving forms with her own added innovations. Shealso depicts her peoples Dreaming stories of Wuluwan (River Bunyiip), Prupi (Child Stealer) and the Rainbow Serpent into woven forms.

Koolmatrie sees weaving as a sustaining part of Ngarrindjeri culture and hopes to keep the practise alive through her work.


Research Yvonne Koolmatrie on the Art Gallery of NSW website and answer the following questions:


  • Why is it harder to collect sedge grass than it once was?
  • What does Yvonne Koolmatrie think are her responsibilities as a weaver?
  • What is Yvonne Koolmatrie’s process for creating a new weaving?

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Many of these resources and activities have been developed in consultation with NSW Education Standards Authority (NESA) to ensure that the program meets NSW curriculum outcomes for Stages 3, 4 & 5.